10 glorious Gloucestershire locations to enjoy open-air theatre

Spanning beautiful gardens, unique amphitheatres and rustic barns, this summer pack a picnic and enjoy an alfresco performance at one of the best open-air theatre spots in Gloucestershire.

Shakespeare famously wrote, ‘all the world’s a stage’, and this certainly rings true in Gloucestershire this summer, with open-air theatre events taking place at some of the most picturesque locations across the county.

Boasting outdoor drama, the bard under the stars, and fine family entertainment, SoGlos has handpicked 10 of our favourite places to enjoy an alfresco theatre performance in Gloucestershire.


1. Tuckwell Amphitheatre

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Cheltenham’s annual Open-Air Theatre Festival returns to Bacon Theatre this summer, offering an eclectic programme featuring Shakespearean drama, family shows, and comedy.

Running from Thursday 19 July to Thursday 2 August 2018, performances include David Walliams’ bestseller The Midnight Gang; Jane Austen's classic romantic comedy Emma; and Shakespeare's hilarious play As You Like It.


2. Painswick Rococo Gardens


Painswick Rococo Garden offers an enchanting setting for an outdoor show, boasting striking, historical buildings, pretty woodlands, and glorious views across the countryside.

What’s more, with scheduled summer performances including Shakespeare and comedy, there’s plenty to delight theatre fans. The Handlebards will be performing Twelfth Night and Romeo and Juliet in June 2018, while IK Productions will deliver a hilarious adaptation of The Three Musketeers in August 2018.


3. Eastnor Castle


Roll out your picnic blanket within the picturesque grounds of Eastnor Castle; boasting an arboretum, lovely lake, and glorious views, the impressive setting creates a perfect atmosphere for outdoor theatre.

In June and July 2018, there will be two performances from Heartbreak Productions, spanning Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice and David Walliams' hugely popular children's book, The Midnight Gang, offering something for the whole family.


4. Cowley Manor

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Cowley Manor will delight theatre fans with the return of its ever-popular event, Theatre Under the Stars in July and August 2018, offering the chance to enjoy great entertainment within the stunning Cotswold setting.

This year’s programme will see Jenny Wren Productions present an enchanting adaptation of classic novel Emma; and Ian Kennedy Productions perform riotous comedy The Three Musketeers.


5. The Garden at Miserden


Set on a 850-estate overlooking the Golden Valley, The Garden at Miserden is nestled in the countryside and offering views across the rolling Cotswold hills – making it a picture-perfect setting for alfresco entertainment.

On Saturday 14 July 2018, there’s the chance to settle down to enjoy the show that’s been described as ‘Downton Abbey with gardening tips’, when Old Herbaceous is performed.


6. Chedworth Manor

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An uplifting show within a picturesque Cotswold setting, theatre and Shakespeare fans can enjoy Much Ado About Nothing at Chedworth Manor in June 2018.

Shakespeare in the Open offers the chance to see the Bard’s classic comedy, complete with love, trickery, and gossip, all while soaking up the glorious countryside views.


7. Longborough Festival Opera


Longborough Festival Opera’s offers a picture-perfect setting for audiences, boasting an intimate 500-seat theatre nestled in the heart of the Cotswold countryside, with this year’s programme running from June to August 2018.

Meanwhile, with the 2018 season spanning Der fliegende Holländer, La Traviata, Ariadne auf Naxos, and L'incoronazione di Poppea, audiences are in for a real treat.


8. Sandford Parks Lido


There’s a chance to enjoy a feast of alfresco theatre within the unique setting of Sandford Parks Lido this summer, where Rain or Shine Theatre Company will perform a humorous adaptation of Much Ado About Nothing on Saturday 4 August 2018.

Promising great entertainment in the heart of Cheltenham, the alfresco show is set in November 1918 when The Great War has come to an end, with men returning home and romance awaiting them…


9. Over Barn

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IK Productions’ anticipated tour of The Three Musketeers is set to visit the beautifully rustic Over Barn near Gloucester on Thursday 30 August 2018, promising great entertainment within a characterful setting.

Audiences can roll out a picnic blanket and settle down for the uplifting performance; be transported the length and breadth of France with D’Artagnan, Athos, Porthos and Aramis, as they try to save the day.


10. Museum in the Park

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Head to Stroud’s pretty Museum in the Park for a day of family fun, followed by an enjoyable performance of Jane Austen’s romantic comedy, Emma, on Saturday 28 July 2018.

Performed by Jenny Wren Productions, the open-air performance delves into the dating scene of the 19th century, where Emma plays matchmaker amongst her friends – but how will her own heart fare?


© SoGlos
Thursday 24 May 2018

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